12 Must-Do Experiences in Montana
Our 12 must-do experiences in Montana range from Native American survival courses to Mountain West safaris, winter yurt excursions to wagon wheel dinner parties. Montana is the fourth largest state in the USA, and offers urban charm, outdoor adventure, curious history, and more. Get at the heart of Big Sky Country with 12 of its most unique, eclectic, and downright thrilling experiences.
A course with Bozeman’s PAST Skills Wilderness School is one of the most unique ways to immerse yourself in the traditions of the West. Students are taught survival techniques, indigenous philosophy, and more. Courses range from two days—learning primitive arrows—to six months (residency programs) and can be tailored to suit your needs as a survivalist.
40060 Paws Up Rd, Greenough, MT 59823, USA
The chuck wagon dinner is a prairie classic. Today, rustic dining takes on new meaning when you hop on a wagon and head out into the wilderness for a gourmet meal. Just like an American settler heading west, the Paws Up Chuck Wagon Experience is an immersive ranch dining trip. A classic horse-drawn wagon will bring you to the banks of the historic Blackfoot River. Upon arrival you can sip sangria and play horse shoes while a private chef cooks your meal. Here seasonal, simple, and rustic flavors (like angus prime ribs and fire roasted corn) are expertly prepared for a memorable event. After dinner enjoy the picturesque setting and local talent—a banjo player or cowboy poet.
511 Pleasant St, Miles City, MT 59301, USA
Miles City is usually a nice, quiet place - a quaint eastern Montana town, known for its laid-back pace, outdoor access, and Western graces. But when the Bucking Horse Sale rides into town, things can get a little hectic. Just ask the poor cowboys pictured here what they think of the pace of Miles City. 2016 will mark the 66th edition of the famed Bucking Horse Sale, so put a note in your calendar now, shine up your cowboy boots and poke around in your closet for that dusty wide-brimmed hat of yours - there’s a rodeo, horse races, dances, cowboy concerts, and more to see to.
I-90 Frontage Rd, Crow Agency, MT 59022, USA
Experience the defining moments of Custer’s Last Stand—without the severe finality that befell his cavalry—at the Little Bighorn Battlefield. Custer’s Last Stand Reenactment at Little Big Horn Days is one of the most extravagant productions of its kind in America, and thrills all those passing through Montana. Little Big Horn Days run June 25—29, 2014.
110 Main St, Martinsdale, MT 59053, USA
The historic Crazy Mountain Inn is a great place to stop while cruising through Montana, especially if you arrive with a growling stomach. The Inn’s legendary chicken-fried steak will set you right (and put you in the mood for a 10-mile trek, or a fireside nap, depending on your constitution). The Sour Cream Lemon Pie is qually famed, though lighter breakfasts, lunches, and dinners do come out of the kitchen from time to time.
7485 Virgelle Ferry Rd N, Loma, MT 59460, USA
The Missouri River Canoe Company is one of Montana‘s most well-respected outfitters, and it arranges solo and guided river expeditions that can last a day, a week, or all summer long for those really keen on engrossing themselves in the West. The ornithology workshops combine the best of the 4-day river trip with a birding expedition led by local guides into one wonderfully engrossing package.
401 3rd Ave SW, Browning, MT 59417, USA
Coffee and espresso are a big part of the road trip experience for many people, though it usually comes quickly through a drive-thru window, or across the counter at a big chain coffee shop. The Big Lodge Espresso shop is different. This giant concrete teepee rests on the outskirts of Browning and serves up some of Montana‘s best coffee, 89-cent pastries, and two-dollar muffins. And, once again, it’s a giant concrete teepee! Get your camera ready.
Dinner at Montana Backcountry Adventure’s yurt is a unique experience, especially when you consider just how wild Montana winters can be; the falling snow, serene surroundings, and chilly temperatures make the warm confines of the yurt all the more inviting, while the gourmet dinner is the icing on the cake. Access to the yurt is provided by snowcat; the ride is a wholly unique experience in and of itself, while the breathtaking views at Big Sky threaten to fill up every last bit of space on your memory card.
2424 Elizabeth St
Fly-fishing in Big Sky Country is a quintessentially Western experience, while few outfitters are as professional, or as thrilling, as Big Sky Fly Fishers. Jeremy Gilbertson has more than fifteen years of experience as a fisherman, instructor, and outfitter, and provides trips into some of Montana‘s most remarkable rivers and streams, including the Yellowstone and Big Horn Rivers. His team of guides can service individuals, families, or large groups for once-in-a-lifetime fishing expeditions.
890 Buttermilk Creek Rd
Few luxury experiences can top glamping in Montana. Sleeping out under the stars in the most spectacular tent you’ve ever seen as water rips along the river at your back, wolves howl in the distance, and open country surrounds you is one of those once in a lifetime, things-to-do-before-you-die bucket list scenarios that is much more accessible than you might think. Yellowstone Under Canvas can set you up on your own bespoke safari at the gateway to America’s most beautiful national park at a rate that’s affordable and will have you planning a longer adventure before your first night is through.